WWF India, in partnership with Capgemini has recently launched their environment education portal to help the students today create a better tomorrow.
Their journey started back in 2014 and their official launch held on 11th September 2017.
This journey of 3 year from the idea to inception has resulted in One Planet Academy, the first ever environment focused education portal for students and teachers in India. As we witness the inclination of students towards the technology enabled education, this is a step in the direction to help students understand the responsibility towards the nature.
Speaking at the launch Mr. Ravi Singh, CEO WWF India said, “The one planet academy brings together two essential pillars of WWF India- our approach to conservation and education. Looking at the strengthening the capacity of schools and teachers, the website aims to create awareness on matters of the environment while connecting with young minds of today for contributory actions towards our planet”.
Mr. Anil Jalali, CHRO- India, Capgemini said, “It is imperative for us to nurture young minds today to develop conscientious and socially responsible citizens of tomorrow. Education and environment are key focus areas of our CSR roadmap and we believe that education is the most powerful enabler of change”.
The website focuses on various environmental themes and is a digital hub for schools, teachers and students that provides for digital training and resource center. The platform is designed to be a one stop solution for education information and interactive and engaging content on the environmental and sustainable practices. The website encourages the schools to adopt green practices, offers project and activity ideas for the teachers along with online training courses, and house games, comics, interactive maps etc. for the students. All these activities, games, comics and other ways engages students and helps them understand the crucial role they play as an individual towards the sustenance of the environment.
Few games that I got to try at the launch event addresses the issues of waste management and the impact of vehicular pollution on the climate. The first game on the waste management gives an understanding about the rising problem of waste and its impact on the environment to the player. The gameplay required the player to segregate the waste to reduce pollution and burden on landfill sites thereby helping the students to do so in their real life.
The other game addressed the impact of vehicular pollution on the climate tells how vehicular emissions lead to pollution, and cause global warming and climate change. The students get an understanding the importance of the need for regular maintenance of vehicles to ensure that they do not add to the cause of climate change. Though students might not be the immediate practitioners of the lesson learnt from the game they can and will surely ask their parents to get a regular car repair and pollution check done as to make sure no harm is being done to the environment.
There were more such engaging games that touched upon important environment issues that can help young students make the wise decisions and choices from the very beginning. Instilling students with a sense of responsibility towards the environment from the very beginning can be the cause behind the fruitful environment that we all wish to witness tomorrow. And we see that this platform can be one building block in the same. The engaging games, comics, stories, information, facts and so much more for students is something that will definitely loop the students in.
The platform’s teacher section provides ideas for projects and activities along with publications related to educating young learners about the environment. The website also provides short term training courses for teachers. Also the event highlighted that the WWF India will be conducting workshops including nature trails and lectures and talks on environment issues and sustainable practices by experts at WWF India as a part of this initiative.
Speaking at the event Ms. Radhika Suri, Director, Environment Education, WWF India said, “Every teacher must take the role of an environment educator and all the students will become conscious of their responsibility towards the environment. The portal OPA is going to bridge the gap between the content and the real life possibilities of the same. ”
Highlighting the importance of technology in education and how we can leverage the power of technology to help students take on their roles Mr. Sudhanshu Sarronwala Exc. Communication Director WWF International said, “Students play such a big role with what you can do in the future. Technology plays an inevitable role in the education now and this platform is right at the intersection of both.”
There were talks regarding the incorporation of environment studies as a full-fledged subject and the importance of the same; How knowledge or awareness is not enough but what we need is to make sure that things are being done in the right direction and students being the future can bring in the rays of hope.
The event was concluded on thoughts for the betterment of the environment the key role education plays in the same and how we as individual can fulfill our roles and left the attendees with a message that stated: THINK BIG, ACT SMALL BUT START NOW!